Primary/Secondary EDCs

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by Dave Dallam, Oct 5, 2020.

  1. Dave Dallam

    Dave Dallam Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Aug 9, 2020
    What do you carry as a primary EDC knife? And do you carry a secondary knife? What do you use your primary knife for throughout your day? And why your secondary choice? So much of this is defined by what we cut, which is different for everyone.

    As much as I love my dozen-ish GECs, I find my Kershaw Leek gets into my pocket most often: inexpensive, easy replaced, razor sharp and super slicy for opening boxes, trimming a thread or even a hangnail. That choice determines my secondary, which is usually my GEC Calf Roper: pocket friendly and three more small blades. I take the Calf Roper out for someone needing a knife, as Kershaw’s Speed-Safe is a little too much like a “switchblade” to non-knife people.

    Working around the yard or workshop I grab my Mini-Griptilian or more recently my new GEC #23 Pioneer Trapper, as I prefer a bigger and sturdier locking blade for harder work.

    So what’s your primary/secondary EDC choice and especially your rationale???
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  2. Quiet

    Quiet "That guy" Platinum Member

    Oct 11, 2013
    I almost always carry a modern folder, but pair it with one (or even two) Traditional knives pretty much every day. I have a large number of both sorts of knives, so I'l refrain from listing them out, since I switch out so often.

    As for rationale, that's easy. I work in an office environment, and no one bats an eye when I pull out say, my #44 in order to snip the band on a new ream of paper. They might have an issue if I used one of my large folders like my Diskin Volcan, Shiro F3, or one of my Olamic Wayfarers.
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  3. TrainedBullets

    TrainedBullets Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 23, 2017
    I work from home and live in the suburbs. Typical EDC knife duties usually involve opening packages, cutting cords, tape, etc. for work around the house, light food prep, fidget toy, cutting whatever others need cut when I’m out of the house (no one carries knives where I live, yet someone always needs one), first aid. In other words, light duty.

    My Primary is a Fiddleback Forge Esquire, which I carry in a cross draw belt sheath. IMHO, nothing is quieter (draws less attention), faster, or easier to deploy than a fixed blade in a nice leather belt sheath. The 2.75” blade is enough for my typical EDC needs yet is short enough that I think I can explain a legal purpose of carry to a police officer if I forget to take it off and run out with it. 3.75” handle is enough for a decent four finger grip. Combined, the 6.5” OAL makes it easy to conceal under a loose fitting shirt (I rarely carry it in public). It’s finished with some beautiful and crazy comfortable Osage scales.

    My Secondary is a Gec 29, usually the Osage. I carry mine in a pocket slip along with a small pen. This one gets carried the most and becomes my Primary when I’m not carrying the Esquire (at which time I also carry an Alox Cadet to lend). I like the overall quality, materials, combination of blades, blade lengths, closed length, fairly well sunk joints, curves, and non threatening nature.

    Attached Files:

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  4. JohnDF

    JohnDF Gold Member Gold Member

    May 14, 2018
    Not sure that we are supposed to be talking about modern knives and their features out here in the open. o_O

    For EDC duties, I (like most) post those in the "Totin' thread.
    It's almost always a traditional slipjoint with a closed length between 3-1/2" and 3-3/4".
    If I carry a second knife, it's usually just something pretty I can play with during the day.
    guy g likes this.
  5. Smaug

    Smaug Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 30, 2003
    "Primary" is usually a locking folder, with a blade in the 3 to 3.5" range. This is used for all the cutting, unless a smaller blade is called for or unless I somehow let this one get too dull.
    "Secondary" is usually a SAK, which is "traditional" when viewed from a European point of view. It has a back-up blade, as well as some useful tools.

    I put Primary and Secondary in quotes because I often use the Secondary more for its tools. For example, I use the toothpick in the SAK after almost every meal and on slow days, I don't use a knife blade at all. (without going out of my way to)
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  6. DavidABQ


    Jul 31, 2017
    I must be the odd man out here. While my edc will change, currently a Queen Copperhead, I never carry a second knife. I know 2-hands so I can carry 2 knives but I have never really found a reason for a second knife.
    Weird, I know but that is how I am.
  7. Hickory n steel

    Hickory n steel Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    I like having a smaller second blade for packages and such, and one two blade folder in my pocket is all I really need.
    I do lovemy small belt knives though and they're so convenient that when carried I will end up using it in place of the folders main and the folders secondary for everything I always do.

    Lately it's been this, though it culd be a number of fixed / folder combos , and I've got yet another small belt knife on the way.
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2020
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  8. Peregrin

    Peregrin Traditional Forum Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Sep 2, 2004
    Sorry, no modern knife discussion in Traditional. Moving this to General knife discussion.
  9. Knives&Lint

    Knives&Lint Head full of lightnin', hat full of rain Platinum Member

    May 10, 2013
    My EDC knives vary, but on an everyday basis I tend to carry 3 knives; a modern folder, a traditional, and a SE Dragonfly. If I'm being completely honest, my rationale (particularly with the modern/traditional pairing) is simply my own enjoyment. I enjoy the process of pairing them together, and it's a good way to get more knives that I like in my pocket to use on a regular basis. It's really not fitting any particular need for me to have both, just part of the hobby for me.

    Now, with the fully serrated Dragonfly, I find that this particular edge adds a great deal of utility to my carry while going virtually unnoticed clipped in my back pocket until needed. Even this, however, is partially because I enjoy carrying this knife (as well as swapping SE blades into various scales), and not something I absolutely need. I could very easily get by with one knife like a reasonable human being. But then I wouldn't be here would I ;)



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  10. Therom


    Nov 13, 2013
    My primary is usually a 3.0-3.5” locking folder.
    I have a rotation but most of the time it is a CRK, either a small inkosi or a large sebenza

    I have a pair of SAK - a rambler and a bantam - that i use as secondary tool / loaner knife
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  11. The Aflac Duck

    The Aflac Duck Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 27, 2014
    I don’t always stick to this idea, but I’ll go with a Good, Bad, and Ugly setup. It’s just something that I like to do, nothing official.

    Good- stays clean most times, light duty. Small, non-threatening.

    Bad- utility duty. When the job is too big for something like a Traditional knife, or you just need a larger knife.

    Ugly- self explanatory. Double edge OTF, or Spyderco Civilian, or both.

    Today’s GBU carry:D:

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  12. Owen K.

    Owen K. Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 9, 2016
    Yup I have too many knives. Usually depending on task I have 2-3 knives on me. A combination of modern folder, a traditional or box cutter, and a fixed blade. Right now I have a folding construction utility knife and a titanium bugout, because I like it.
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  13. afishhunter

    afishhunter Basic Member Basic Member

    Oct 21, 2014
    My "normal" EDC for the last few decades has been a Buck 110 or Old Timer 7OT/6OT on my belt, with a "large" 4 inch plus stockman and either a 4 blade scout/demo knife or 3 layer SAK in my pocket.
    The task at hand decided which I used.
    For the 7 or 8 years I was helping out on my then boss' charter yacht, I added a Marlin Spike to my pocket, or kept it handy in my cabin on the days I wasn't working with lines (horizontal)/halberds/(vertical)/(fiber) stays/rigging/and splicing, or running electrical wires.

    I've recently started switching between the Buck 110 and a two blade slipjoint folding hunter on my belt. Pocket carry has remained pretty much the same. I believe the adage "Old habits are ... "hard" ... to break..." is applicable...

    Since retiring 3 years ago, (not by choice) my knives don't see near as much use as they used to. :(
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  14. brownshoe

    brownshoe I support this site with my MIND

    Sep 6, 2002
    I only carry 2 knives when traveling by car. Sunfish Forge warncliffe in O1 with a Remington handle (trucker's knife) plus a Matriarch.
    guy g likes this.
  15. Dave Dallam

    Dave Dallam Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Aug 9, 2020
    Although a "traditional folder" forum, I put the note here because I wanted to see the responses from people who probably have at least one traditional folder in their EDC, or they wouldn't be responding to this forum. It's interesting to understand the balance between modern and traditional, fixed and folder, for people who carry two knives. Thanks to everyone who has responded.
    guy g likes this.
  16. mouseshadow


    Jul 8, 2017
    Primary is some form of 3-4" fixed blade horizontal at 10 o'clock. Secondary is a Para 2 in the right back pocket. Junk cutting is done with a Gerber utility knife (the little money clip-looking one) carried behind the belt in the waistline at 12:30 or so. I am a service plumber, so I need choices.
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  17. Dcdavis

    Dcdavis Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 13, 2018
    Primary is a large CRK everyday.
    Secondary is a SAK electrician when I remember it or haven’t lost it.
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  18. Ironbut

    Ironbut Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 1, 2016
    No matter what my main blade is, whether it's a traditional or modern folder, I always have an Alox Cadet in the other pocket.
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  19. Cvrobinson

    Cvrobinson Going to hell, I’ll be back, anyone need anything Gold Member

    Dec 19, 2017
    Fixed blade an a gentlemen’s folder most days
  20. kwick72

    kwick72 Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 17, 2013
    What ever main Blade I have with me, I have a SAK compact with me. I find the scissors handy but most of the time I use the eyeglass screwdriver helped out a few people at work.
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2020
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